Tuesday, 7 November 2017

52 million that wasn’t.

“I don’t know what Toto does with his money”. Bogi Benda, a mug of beer in hand, laments to his wife, Sofi. “He is always borrowing money from me. Today it was 10K last month it was 15K”.

With a half forlorn-half bewildered look Sofi responds “I agree that that is a lot of money. He should manager his money better.  Then she asks, “But does he pay you back?”

“Of course not”, answers Bogi. “I have never lent him any”. And he takes a major swig off his mug.
(this was a good place for chuckle cause the rest of the stuff is drab.)

Now it so happens that some Kirinyaga wheeler dealers want their money back. The whole ksh.52m of it? But from whom? From their Governess. The same one who made a billion vaporise at the NYS? Yes! Same one. But that is water under the bridge and irrelevant here.

This time, it so happens that one humid Tuesday afternoon, the Uhurists of Kirinyaga were summoned by their leaders led by the Governess - Okay. Governess is archaic so let us change that that Governoress -  the Uhurist of Kirinyaga were summoned by their governoress to Sifa Gardens in Mũcakuthĩ, Kirinyaga County in which venue a number of important proclamations were made.

  1. The Uhurists were told that the region has 351,000 registered voters but 48,000 of them did not participate in the August 8 polls. So this time ALL the residents of Kirinyaga had decided to ALL come out and vote.
  2.  Although the Uhurists had sworn to vote to the last person come the repeat elections on 26th October, the leaders had decided that they were not going to run a campaign that costs them nothing. So they, the leaders, had raised Sh51.9 million (enough to cover 1k per voter na 4.71m ya kutoa) for campaigns for re-election of and for H.E President Dr. Pst. Uhuru Esq, C-in-C, kenyatta,CGH,voter no.1.
  3. The money was to be used for roadshows and rice to lure voters for re-election of and for H.E President Dr. Pst. Uhuru Esq, C-in-C, Kenyatta, CGH, voter no.1.
But now a section of Kirinyaga county politicians have put Governoress Ann Waiguru, née Ani Mumbi, on the spot over the Sh51.9 million. They claim that the roadshows money was no-show. That the committee can only account for the Sh11 million that was received and deposited in the campaign account yet MCAs, MPs and other conmen pledged 52 million. Ani was not a signatory to the account. No. Two MCAs, an MP and an Uhurist from the HQ were. But they want poor Anni to explain anyway.

One Uhurists explains, “Only ten cars and a bicycle were branded.”  Adding “Rice was eaten during one roadshow at Wamũmũ, yes, but basmati, pishori or any rice for that matter is free in Mwea. This is a scandal.”  

When asked how much of the 52m million was his contribution the chief complainer retorted, “I did not contribute anything. But money was raised. 52 million of it. We want her to account for it.”

A resident has confided to Juskistopia the whole saga is a sideshow.

Monday, 28 August 2017

We shall eat meat as you salivate. Deal with it!

Mũndũ a vaa nĩ atige kwania ngai nda! (stop boasting to your god how full your stomach is).
You may have heard recently a man boasting that it was his turn to eat meat and the turn of others to salivate. Well, the hubris from one who feels he has ‘arrived’ is not new.
Sometimes back in the African Reserve of Kagaari North, it is said that there was a man who grew extremely rich. I mean, the fellow owned and ran a hotel!  A hotel where the menu-on-the-wall had six items; chai, mandaci, kafu, ndumbuiya, cavaci, tosti-mafuta. In comparison, the other two “hotels” in shopping centre, and all the others in neighbouring shopping centres, had two-item menus. Chai, mandaci. Now at Independence things were not exactly rosy in these parts. The populace had been uprooted from their farms and transferred to a village so that the colonialist could isolate the Mau-mau belligerents.  Once the war ended, the government had another headache - How to encourage people to go back to the shambas! An idea was mooted to reward the African who would resettle in the shambas, ‘fastest with the mostest’ i.e. build and relocate into the best house. People started building in earnest. The country side sparkled with iron sheets replacing thatched roofs on huts, mĩthonge, leading the neighbouring community, mbeti, to remark, “ĩĩ mwembu arumia mũcũngũ agũtumirwa nyomba ya ĩcaa, arũme!” (meaning after beating up the white man, the white man has built for the Embu’s iron sheet roofed houses). But our rich man had the means. In a jiffy he had built a timber house (actually they were offcuts) with a red concrete floor! He won the best house contest worth sh4000 and thus grew event richer.  The government mandarins stole less those days so when his reward money was released they dully stole half of it and gave him the rest. He received a whooping sh2000. Now that is what is called kuinuliwa. In his celebratory mood he is reported to have declared; “I have left poverty behind me by seven corners”. If you have run a cross country race you would appreciate what it means to be seven bends away from the next fellow in the race. For example from GPO to Yaya centre there is only 5 corners and GPO to Westlands is only 3 corners.
Though poverty never quite caught up with him, it did give him a run for his money.

What am I going on about?

Jukistopia tells me it is foolhardy for anyone to think that the country has left dictatorship, despotism and tyranny hehind ‘by seven corners’. We passed the 2010 constitution in a bid to entrench human rights and equity, to end tribalism and cronyism, to eradicate corruption and curtail abuse of executive power.  While all these maladies might never catch-up with us again, we can slip back to them. It is quite evident that the level of inter-ethnic intolerance is increasing and those wielding state power feel obliged to unleash it upon those they perceive as posing a threat to their monopoly of state resources.
It becomes all too easy to cheer when you are not on the receiving end of the music. But when the tables turn, the dance is not all that delightful. Therefore although one might not agree with what those being tear gassed stand for, let them be.

Thursday, 17 August 2017

Six Pillars of Raila Election Petition - 2017

It seems Jaromogi’s son does not live around here. Jukistopia that is. People have shrugged off serious stuff and casually walked out of court and you bother taking them there with hearsay. People who take impunity for breakfast and who can swallow a whole school compound, pap, and not belch require hard evidence not ati “polling lines were not gazetted”. Gazeti is for wrapping meat. These people do sh9.2 billion computer-typing errors and you insult them by saying that they added themselves a miserable 200 votes. Surely!

Long after the form 34s were fed into the IEBC servers and the final tally declared the vote count is still increasing on the IEBC database like a Nairobi Water meter that counts upwards daily whether there is water or not and all you can say is that there was a queue with more than the 500 people stipulated in law. Haven't you heard of aspirations or is it that you don't understand our Kenyan humour? Some laws are just aspirations, okey? Okay. Some laws are for, as reggae DJ would say, "to nice up the show". In country where you a meeting called for 9:00 a.m. starts at 12:00 noon, surely 500, 700 and 990 is the same number so stop splitting hairs.

The threshold of integrity is so low in this country that all the grounds the son of Bondo mentions can be termed frivolous and an abuse of the (supreme) court process. These are matters that can, intra vires,  be decided on by a Karengerere (village court presided by Headman). A first year ligation student can wade through them.

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Declaration of Guilt

Martin Niemöller, a Lutheran minister, started off as a supporter of the Third Reich in the build up to Nazi Germany. It was easy. It was understandable. It was acceptable. Germany, and the rest of Europe, was emerging for the ravages of the Great War (later called First Word Wwar). They were difficult years, those, and the people were crying out for peace. Any kind of peace. The Bolsheviks (read socialist) and then later Jews became easy scapegoats. Antisemitism reached fever peak pitch in the mid thirties. When the Gestapo started night raids and banning of groups and individuals the people tacitly approved. Martin Niemöller was one of them.

Was he sailing too close to the wind? He would soon find out. By and by the regime started Nazification of the churches and Niemöller among other pastors protested but by then it was too little too late. For their effort
Himmler threw them into concentration camps among the same socialist, Jews and other minorities. He did seven years.
It is said that God works in mysterious ways. After the seven years and in an effort to pacify the guilt gnawing away at their souls, the pastors made this self-indicting Stuttgart Declaration of Guilt:
“Through us infinite wrong was brought over many peoples and countries. That which we often testified to in our communities, we express now in the name of the whole church: We did fight for long years in the name of Jesus Christ against the mentality that found its awful expression in the National Socialist regime of violence; but we accuse ourselves for not standing to our beliefs more courageously, for not praying more faithfully, for not believing more joyously, and for not loving more ardently.”

But Niemöller is mostly remembered for this lamentation:

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out because I was not a Socialist.Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out because I was not a Trade Unionist.Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

What about you? Is there an ill you are condoning just because it is perpetrated on your perceived enemy? Do you approve of the regime subjugating other communities because they are not “your people”? It may appear right for the regime to bend the law slightly to suit a situation, your situation, but bit by bit of bending the law will eventually break. And once the law breaks you will not have a law to lean on when your turn to be down-pressed comes.

Take care of little injustices and the big injustices will take care of themselves

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

One Man One Vote One Unga

You have not heard from Jukistopia for a while. Lucky you. Many things have happened in Jukistopia worth posting home about. But although the spirit has been willing, the wi-fi was weak. It still is so I will rush this.

In the runner up to the 1992 elections, there was a sudden maize shortage country wide. No crop failure had been reported. No crop failure could have been reported. Under the wise leadership of Mr. Moi, such things were reported by the wise man himself. And he did not until he did. When he did, it was at the right time and the right place. The roadside. This time the roadside was at Uthiru-koporishon.
One Wednesday, on Waiyaki way while on his way home from his house, after hitting the tenth pothole to the left, the twelve to the right and a couple in between, he figured he was at Koporishoni and parked his white Volkswagen kombi. Between the kombi and mama mboi's kioski, Masha, (his peers called him wa-ngara) was misty-eyed roasting maize on an NCC labeled dustbin cover for one shilling a cobfull. Em-O-1 ordered one piece, gave a one hundred bob note, did not ask for change, was not given change and walked to the kioski. At the kioski he ordered a bottle of coke soda and a kakungumu, gave a two hundred shilling note, was not given change, did not ask for change, and started addressing the crowd that had gathered.

Answering a question that had not been asked, and after threatening “hivi karibuni nita toboa….blah blah blah…” he revealed that some disgruntled elements working for and with their foreign masters were causing artificial unga shortage to disgrace the good, god, given government. The people ululated and urged him on; "toboa! toboa! toboaaaa!". When he was done with his tirade, Uthiru girls secondary got sh20,000 for nyayo milk, Uthiru boys secondary got sh2,500 for nyayo milk, and the people continued getting hungry or angry or both….whatever. Let me say people were getting restless. So the mtukufu, who then was referred to as ehm-o-one in hushed voices, summoned a full cabinet meeting. It was full house the following Thursday. Here are the names of those in attendance.
1.       Moi.
After thorough deliberations a solution to the biting maize shortage was found. The solution was so simple the cabinet was surprised he had not thought of it before. But would it work? The cabinet crossed his fingers. The solution was code named one man one vote one unga. The methodology was, depending on your region you either got a packet of unga plus a voting card or a packet of unga in exchange to your voting card. Come d-day, the results were as spectacular as they were surprising. In places where voters had sold-out their cards for unga, somehow they never turned up to vote, perhaps due to their full stomachs, while in places where voters had kept a packet of unga and vote, the turnout was up to a high of 110%, perhaps again due to their full stomachs. The cabinet made note of that. On their part, the election observers noted that though the election results might have been slightly influenced by maize flour, by and large they reflected the will of the people. The cabinet made note of that too.

Come the 1997 elections, how uncanny! There was another biting maize shortage and all the necessary noises about foreign masters. There was also something else. A cabinet meeting. A shorter cabinet meeting this time but that none the less delivered a devastating win.

Why all this pesa nane history? Well, It was not me who taught that, “A people without history is like a tree without roots”. It was Marcus Mosiah Garvey. With #elections2017 looming large, the prodigies of nyayo intrigue and chicanery did not need to visit the Sage of Kabartonjo. They have a mama for that. In any case the sage made sure they would never need to à la proverbs 22. (Train a child in the way he should go, and even when he is old he will not turn away from it). Why redesign a wheel then when “Turnkey” is the new buzz word?

So, the young Turks turnkey maize solution was from the shelf activated lock, stock and barrel with a simple rationale. It has worked before, it will work now, it will work in future. I mean it is simple algebra of extrapolation (and digital logic). If from 0 to N is true then upto N+1 must also be true, right? Wrong!
It appears there is a bug in the solution. The barrel is spitting fire the wrong way.
It appears the bug in the Kenyan maize stalk has reached the Mexican maize stock. The bug is depleting the Mexican maize stock before the unga reaches the voter.

But these are tough boys who have handled worse personal challenges. They have wrestled with vultures and emerged triumphant. Will they now worry about ravens and crows? No. Nothing will stop another five years nyayoism inspired hegemony.

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

ElectionKe 2017

I have jeremiad to all who have cared to listen regarding the coming elections. I have said they will be the worst elections since the 1988 ones. What has shocked me is that two out of three people ask me what was wrong with the 1988 elections. When I say we voted by queuing behind the agent holding the picture of one preferred candidate. They ask, What!?

Mlolongo voting is what they are popularly called. And because they were also be used to eliminate the “also ran”s  and other undesired candidates, they were also called “uchaguzi wa mchujo (elimination elections)”.
For those who did not know, the wise men of KANU, most of whom are seeking governor and senate seats, decided that the ruling party, KANU, would hold nominations just before the general elections. Nothing strange about that except that KANu was the only party. These KANU elections would be by queuing method.  At the polling station, would be agents holding the a portrait of the candidate and the voters were required to queue behind the agent with the portrait of their preferred candidate. What!?

That wasn’t even the painful part. In this queue-voting stage, the KANU mandarins decided that those who receive 70 per cent of the vote (70% of the cast ballots not registered members or voters) were to be declared elected unopposed without the need to go through the general election but instead got a direct ticket to Parliament.
The obnoxious bit was that the list that ended up in Nairobi had a distant resemblance to the one at the school fields.

What a perfect way it was for chujaring (eliminating) the non KANU damu, a term used to refer to stalwart and sycophant.

For further reading search “Okiki Amayo”, “KANU disciplinary committee”, “Joseph Kamotho”,  “kanu stalwart”, “Peter Oloo Aringo” party discipline in 1990

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Digital Toilet Paper

A man bewildered at the meagre resources availed for his project
The recent surge of tourists into China has stimulated technological innovation. Case in point, the ‘Temple of Heaven Park’.  This place is extremely popular with foreign tourists. But it is popular with domestic tourist too but for a different reason. Toilet paper.

You see traditionally most public restrooms in China have not provided tissue. Instead, public toilet users are expected to carry their

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Saving The House By Setting It On Fire

The rays of the January midday sun pierced through the canopy of an acacia tree in Jukistopia. One ray fell on Mrs. Nthenge’s arm illuminating an insect-bite pimple the way a spotlight circles a performer on stage. Slumped on a stick-chair under the shade of the tree, she prepared to enjoy her meal of muthokoi. She would have preffered to be indoors following up on Afro cinema, but